How to Fish for Perch in Northeast Wisconsin

by David Harris
Enjoy fresh-caught perch in northeast Wisconsin.

Enjoy fresh-caught perch in northeast Wisconsin.

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White and yellow perch can be found in Green Bay, Lake Michigan, Lake Superior and tributary streams in northeast Wisconsin. They typically school near the shore at depths no greater than 30 feet. They feed year-round, making them an attractive quarry for ice fisherman. Perch are easy fish to reel in and do not put up a fight such as trout. Their meat has a reputation for being flaky and delicious.

Items you will need

  • Worms
  • Size 3 swivel
  • 1/2 oz. to 1 oz. casting barrel
  • Hook
Step 1

Obtain a Wisconsin fishing license before setting out. You can purchase one online or at a local grocery store, sporting goods store or bait shop.

Step 2

Research the dates of perch season in the counties of northeast Wisconsin. For example, perch season opens in mid-May for Green Bay and its tributary rivers and runs until mid-March. There is a bag limit of 15 per day there. However, not all Wisconsin waters follow these dates or restrictions. You can catch perch year-round on Lake Superior, for example. Check current regulations before setting out as they are subject to change.

Step 3

Travel to a popular perch fishing destination in northeast Wisconsin; possibilities include Bayshore Park in Brown County, Manitowoc Harbor and Sawyer Harbor in Sturgeon Bay. Head out to fish before dawn. The best time to catch perch in northeast Wisconsin is during the morning, when they come to the surface to feed.

Step 4

Look for a place with shallow water near the weed line to set up. Perch feed in these spots and you are more likely to snare some there. Access to a boat will allow you to cover more feeding ground.

Step 5

Prepare your rod. Tie a size-3 swivel to the end of your fishing line and tie a 1/2-oz. to 1-oz. casting barrel just above the swivel. Put the hook on the end of the swivel. Bait your hook with things perch like to eat such as cut-up pieces of nightcrawler, wax worms or maggots.

Step 6

Cast your line out and wait and see if the perch bite. Avoid making a lot of noise or moving around too much or you may spook the fish. Gently tap the line with your finger at the reel after a few minutes to "trigger" the line. Wind the line in a few feet if this doesn't work and then try to trigger it again. Repeat until the line has returned to you and then cast out and try again.

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